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Export Administration Regulations (EAR): Export Controls and Classifications

Updated: Jun 9, 2022

The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) is tasked with the regulation of particular exports that are classified under federal regulations. Depending on the type of goods being sent, its destination, uses, and other factors, exporters may be subject to certain regulations in order to legally export their goods. It is important for exporters under the Export Administration Regulation (EAR) to be knowledgeable as to what type of export their goods fall under and appropriate licensing.

Determining Classifications and Licensing

BIS has four key questions to help exporters determine classifications and appropriate licensing. Every exporter should be able to answer the following questions:

· Who are the parties to the export transaction?

· What is the cargo?

· How is the cargo being used?

· Where is the export destined to?

Knowledge of this information is key to compliance with the EAR.

The BIS regulates select exported goods under the EAR through the Commerce Control List (CCL). Goods on the CCL must be technically described using the Export Control Classification Number (ECCN) system. The ECCN helps exporters understand the reason for control for certain goods, exceptions, and the overall classifications for filing. Generally, most commercial items are classified under EAR99 and require no filing for licenses except in special circumstances. Items regulated as EAR99 may still require a license if they are being transported to a blocked destination or the end use is related to a general activity or subject area that is regularly subjected to an ECCN regulation.

Actions to Prevent Violations

The BIS offers a great amount of guidance for complying with the EAR. Exporters can take many actions to avoid committing violations, such as using a watch list to review all license application parties, review exports using the Automated Exports System (AES), include voluntary self-disclosures, check end users and end uses after export via post shipment verifications, and more.

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